Petrol prices to remain unchanged in coming months

Serbian Finance Minister Mladjan Dinkic announced today that the retail price of gasoline will remain unchanged in the coming months.

Dinkic told Beta news agency that, despite global hikes in crude oil prices, the cost of fuel in Serbia will not rise as the state will yield a portion of its receipts from excise taxes on oil products to offset these market forces.

The Ministry of Finance has prepared changes to the Law on excise taxes, said Dinkic adding that the proposal will be discussed at the next session of the government and then sent to the parliament for adoption.

He said that excise taxes on oil products could only be reduced in a month’s time, adding that prices will remain unchanged until then.

Dinkic said that refining costs will be raised, however he stressed that neither crude oil importers nor citizens and the economy will suffer any damage from it as gasoline, diesel, and other oil products will be sold at unchanged prices.

Dinkic explained that government will calculate the reduction of the excise tax on oil products based on the amount that oil prices have risen in the global market. He went on to say that market forces would have driven the price of gasoline up by about 1.5 dinars per litre.

Noting that the budget will lose revenue on reduced excise taxes, Dinkic explained that the damage to the economy would be greater if petrol prices went up and subsequent hikes in other prices followed.

Dinkic stressed that the government will not approve hikes in any of the prices under its control until July 1 in order to prevent inflationary pressure.